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Greensboro, North Carolina. West Market 
Street Methodist Episcopal Church, 

West Market Street Methodist 
Episcopal Church, South. A History of its 
Growth and Infuence for one Hundred 
Years from its Foundation in 1830, until 
October 12th, 1930. 






Read at 



Published by 

Circle No. 6, Woman's Missionary Society 


West Market Street Methodist 
Episcopal Church, South 


A History of Its Growth and Influence for 
One Hundred Years from Its Foundation in 

1830, until October 12th, 1930 
As Prepared by a Special Committee of the Church 


19 3 4 

West Market Church 



At a meeting of the members and officials of the West 
Market Street Methodist Episcopal Church, South, of Greens- 
boro, North Carolina, held in the year 1929, it was determined 
to celebrate on the 12th day of October, 1930, the Centennial 
of the founding of this Church. To carry out that decision 
the following' committee was appointed to act as the Centennial 
Committee : Charles PI. Ireland, John S. Michaux, Mrs. R. 
R. Alley, Miss Laura Doub, Mrs. E. L. Sides and Mrs. W. C. 
Tucker. This committee in addition to making arrangements 
for the celebration, was responsible for the preparation of the 
Historical Sketch, and in making the preparation the remain- 
der of the committee is especially indebted to Miss Laura 
Doub and Mr. J. S. Michaux for the research work and 
wishes to acknowledge the same. 

The Centennial Committee, in cooperation with the pastor of 
the Church, Rev. PI. Grady Hardin, extended an invitation to 
be present to the following former pastors of this Church : 
Revs. S. H. Hilliard, S. B. Turrentine, E. K. McLarty, E. L. 
Bain, J. IP. Earnhardt, J. F. Kirk and L. D. Thompson. Of 
this number the following responded to the invitation and 
took part in the centennial services in the morning and 
evening : Revs. S. PI. Hilliard, S. B. Turrentine, J. H. Barn- 
hardt, J. F. Kirk and L. D. Thompson. 

Rev. S. H. Hilliard, under whose pastorate it was deter- 
mined to erect the present church building and during which a 
greater portion of the work was completed, was chosen to 
deliver the Centennial Sermon. 

The Committee requested that the pastor, Rev. H. Grady 
Hardin, read the Historical Sketch, which was done at the 
morning service on the 12th of October, 1930. 

The Centennial Sermon was preached by Rev. S. H. Hil- 
liard at the evening service on the 12th of October, 1930. 


Our purpose here today is to celebrate the one hundredth 
anniversary of the founding' of this Methodist Church in the 
town of Greensboro, North Carolina, and in a measure to com- 
memorate the achievements of those who have wrought here 
so nobly and well and have passed on to their reward. 

This Church and all other Methodist Churches in Xorth 
Carolina are deeply indebted to the consecrated pioneer 
Methodist preachers who came to this section of the State 
and so zealously labored for their Master. Though the writ- 
ten records they left are meager and often incomplete, yet the 
work they planned and did is still bearing abundant fruit. 
Dr. A. W. Mangum, a former pastor of this Church, later 
professor of English at the University of Xorth Carolina, says 
of these pioneers : 

"No sculptured stone in stately temple 
Proclaims their rugged lot ; 
Like Him who was their great example. 
This vain world knew them not. 

But though their names no poet wove 

In deathless song or story. 
Their record is inscribed above ; 

Their wreaths are crowns of glory." 

In the year 1770, the year in which the county of Guilford 
was formed, Andrew Yeargan was appointed to the Yadkin 
circuit, and which, no doubt, embraced the county of Guil- 
ford and belonged to the Virginia Conference. Guilford 
circuit was formed three years later and Samuel Dudley and 
James Gibbons were put in charge. Until the year 1791, it 
appeared that the meetings were held in private homes. In 
that year a lot of land upon which to erect a church or meeting 
house in Guilford County, was purchased from Thomas Simp- 
son, situate at the Moris Pork of Haw River. The grantee 
was Francis Asbury and his successors in office. The price 
paid was five shillings. The deed contained all the necessary 
warranties against the closing of any roads or paths which 

would prevent the free ingress and regress to the premises. 
At the beginning of the new century Guilford circuit 
reported 551 white and 39 colored members. A year later, 
1801, the minutes show that Guilford was in the Salisbury 
district and James Douthit was the Presiding Elder. 

The following are the preachers for the Guilford circuit 
from 1800 to the time of the erection of the Greensboro 
Church : 

William Atwood 1800 

Josiah Phillips 1801 

John Moose 1802 

Thomas L. Douglas and J. C, Ballew _ 1803 

William Hubbard and George Dillard 1804 

John Cox and Nathan Weldon 1805 

John Gibbon and Richard Owen 1806 

William Barnes and Charles Roundtree 1807 

Edmund Henley and T. J. Brockwell 1808 

Charles Roundtree and John Humphries 1809 

Joel Arrington 1810 

Edward Cannon and Erasmus Stinson 1811 

Ethelbert Drake 1812 

Joel Arrington and John Doyle 1813 

Joel Arrington and Cyrus Christian 1814 

Henry Robertson and Charles Moseley 1815 

James Hanner and Abram Frail 1816 

Samuel Garrard and James Smith 1817 

John F. Wright and Archibald Robinson 1818 

Samuel Hunter and Benjamin Stephens, Sup. 1819 

Thomas Howard 1820 

James Reid 1821 

James Reid 1822 

Thacker Muir 1823 

Jesse Lee 1824 

Rufns Wiley and Thomas Mann 1825 

Thomas Mann and Jacob Hill 1826 

Rufus Wiley 1827 

W. X. Abington 1828 

Richard Meriwether and Joshua Jaliff 1829 


In 1830 Greensboro was a very small village, having in the 
year 1808 become by the act of the state and county authorities, 
the County seat of Guilford Comity. The Methodists and 
Presbyterians had for some time conducted alternately preach- 
ing and religions services in a building situated on Sycamore 
Street, at a point southeast of the present County Court 
House. During the pastorate of Kev. Peter Doub on the 
Guilford circuit, and through his energy and influence, it was 
determined to erect a Methodist Church building in this 

A lot was purchased from D. C. and W. X. Mebane and a 
deed was made to Elisha Mendenhall, William Adams, Cor- 
nelius Winborne, John W. Harris, Elec. IV. Ward, Jacob 
Pearson, Richard Shelton, Thomas Edwards and David Ed- 
wards, Trustees, and described as follows : 

Beginning at Dr. David Worth's corner, on the 
street running South from the Court House (now 
Jefferson Square) ; thence West 50 feet, joining 
D. C. and W. X. Mebane 's lot; thence North 34 feet, 
joining the aforesaid lot ; thence East 50 feet, joining 
the Southeast corner of the aforesaid lot ; thence 34 
feet to the place of beginning. 
The witnesses were, Peter Adams and Peter Doub. In 
1838 additional land to the South of the church lot was 
purchased and the witnesses were Moses Brock and S. S. 

Soon after the purchase of the original lot the building 
was commenced ; the corner stone was laid by the Greensboro 
Lodge of Masons on the 14th day of August, 1830, and the 
building was completed the next year. Thus was erected the first 
house of worship by any denomination in Greensboro. There 
were at this time 64 members. This church building was 
approximately 30x50 feet, two stories in height, constructed 
of brick and had galleries at the front end and sides. It 
stood on the West side of South Elm Street at a point nearly 
opposite the present Odell Hardware building. 

The erection of any house of worship is an important 
matter, but the founding of this church and the erection of its 

first building in Greensboro were matters of more than ordi- 
nary importance, as this church fostered the establishment 
of a great college ; founded and built other churches ; has 
sent out strong men to preach the gospel ; has sent men and 
women to foreign lands to preach and. administer to the 
spiritual and physical needs of the people of those lands, and 
its men and women have been prominent and effective leaders 
in the cause of our Master. It is therefore meet and proper 
that the hero of that early day should have his meed of 

Rev. Peter Doub was born in Stokes County, March 12, 
1796, his father being Rev. Johan Doub. The family became 
Methodists through the preaching and influence of the early 
Methodist pioneers. AVhile his educational advantages were 
meager, yet his home training was wise and wholesome and he 
was well grounded in the scriptures. However, his indom- 
itable energy overcame his early handicap of want of edu- 
cational advantages and he became a scholar of high order and 
was the recipient of the honorary degree of doctor of divinity. 

At the age of 21 he felt the call of the gospel ministry and 
he offered himself to the Methodist Church. His first appoint- 
ment was to the Haw River circuit as a colleague of the vener- 
able Christopher S. Moring. In the course of the year Mr. 
Moring told him the people objected to his preaching — not as 
to the matter nor as to the manner, but because his sermons 
were too short. He answered that he could not make them 
any longer without repeating what he had said. Moring 
replied : ' ' You must read more, think more and pray more 
and then you can preach more. " It is said the incident greatly 
discouraged Mr. Doub, but he evidently took Mr. Moring 's 
advice, for in after years it is said he preached for two hours, 
and on one occasion when he replied to the book by Dr. Hawks 
on the reasons for leaving the Episcopal Church and joining 
the Roman Catholic Church, he preached for three hours and 

He was greatly interested in education. Nearly simulta- 
neous with the erection of the Methodist Church here, a school 
was opened for the education of young people in which he was 

the leading spirit. He was one of a committee of three to 
petition the Virginia Conference in 1837 for a charter for 
Greensboro Female College. When success crowned their 
efforts he was chosen as one of the nine directors of that 

Besides being a man of outstanding influence in his church 
here and in the State, he was known to the members of the 
General Conference as a man of strength and wisdom. Rev. 
G. G. Smith, the biographer of Bishop James 0. Andrew, says 
in this biography that Rev. Peter Doub's tract on baptism 
made Bishop E. M. Marvin a Methodist. He was often a 
member of the General Conference and was present in New 
York in 184-4 when the Conference deposed Bishop Andrew, 
which caused the division of the Church. He cast his vote to 
sustain Bishop Andrew. He was a member of the General 
Conference held in Louisville, Ky., in 1845, after the division 
of the church, and the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, 
was his suggestion as a name which was accepted by the 
General Conference. 

He departed this life at the home of his daughter, Mrs. C. 
G. Yates, in tins city on August 24, 1869. His farewell mes- 
sage to his church is characteristic of the man: "Tell my 
brothers of the Conference that if I am alive T am fighting 
my way to the skies; if 1 am dead I am alive." 

The first name mentioned as a member of the Board of 
Trustees in the deed for the lot for the new Methodist Church 
is Elisha Mendenhall. His will, which was witnessed by 
Judge Archibald D. Murphey, and evidently written by him, 
showed that he was a man of great wealth for that day. His 
wife, Susannah Mendenhall, was the chief beneficiary under 
this will. She in turn made a will which was of much benefit 
to this church and Greensboro Female College (now Greens- 
boro College). In the ninth paragraph of her will she gave 
two thousand dollars for a College to be erected by the 
Methodist Church. In the tenth paragraph she gave one 
thousand dollars to furnish and make comfortable the Meth- 
odist Church building, the amount not used for said purpose 
to be added to the fund in the aid of the College. In the 

residuary clause of her will she directed that the remainder 
of her estate be divided in three parts and that one part be 
used in the erection of the proposed Methodist College, the 
erection of which to begin within five years. At the "Cen- 
tennial of Methodism in North Carolina," Dr. Turner M. 
Jones, President of Greensboro Female College, making an 
address, during this meeting upon the College, explained that 
nearly all the College records had been destroyed by disastrous 
fires, and he, therefore, was not able to furnish much valuable 
data. He spoke, however, of $4,000.00 having been left the 
College in the will of Susan Mendenhall. This sum was the 
nucleus from which the College was started. Soon a large 
tract of land was purchased to the west of the town, costing 
approximately $3,500.00. Forty acres were reserved for the 
use of the College and the balance was to be disposed of in 
lots. Very soon enough lots were sold to nearly pay the 
amount of the purchase price of the original tract. So, it can 
be safely stated that this Church was instrumental in the 
founding of this great College of which this city and the 
State at large are justly proud. 

This Church remained as a part of Guilford circuit until 
1834, and was served as follows: 1831, John H. Watson and 
W. W. Albea, helper ; 1832-3, Joshua Bethel. In 1834 Greens- 
boro was made a station and Samuel Bryant was made pastor. 
R. O. Burton was pastor in 1835 and B. B. Miles in 1836. 

Rev. Robert O. Burton, who was pastor in 1835, remained 
in the active Methodist ministry until the meeting of the 
Annual Conference in this place in 1883, when he was super- 
annuated against his will and he fought every inch of ground 
to prevent it. He was a great preacher and had been of 
great service to his Church and State. He was educated at the 
"West Point Military Academy, and after answering the call 
to preach, he still retained some of the strict military discip- 
line he learned at the Academy. This story is told of him : 
He was preaching in a country church and while engaged in 
his discourse, a long, lanky fellow wearing a pair of shoes with 
soles pegged on, proceeded up the church aisle toward the 
pulpit, the fellow's shoes crying vocally. As he neared the 

pulpit, Mr. Burton shouted: "Sit down. Sit down, shoes and 
all." It is related that the man obeyed orders and sat down 
in the aisle. 

At the General Conference held in Petersburg, Va., in 
1837, the North Carolina Conference was formed and the first 
session of that Conference was held here on January 31, 1838, 
with Bishop T. A. Morris presiding. Is it not a striking 
coincidence that it was here that the first session of the North 
Carolina Conference was held and that it was also here in 
188!) that the Conference was divided into the North Caro- 
lina and the Western North Carolina Conferences? 

The last pastor to serve Greensboro under the jurisdiction 
of the Virginia Conference was James Purvis and the follow- 
ing served from 1838 to the present time: 

Thomas S. Campbell 1838 

"William Closs 1839 

Addison Lea 18-10 

Ira T. Wyche 1811-1842 

Benjamin M. Williams 1813 

S. 8. Bryant 1811-1815 

Joel W. Tucker 1816 

Peter Doub and Joseph Martin 1817 

Samuel M. Frost 1818 

A. S. Andrews 1819 

James P. Stimpson 1850 

James Jamieson and S. 1). Bumpass, Sup. 1851 

N. II. D. Wilson 1852-1853 

W. II. Bobbitt 1851-1855 

Numa P. Reid and Joshua Bethel, Sup 1856 

L. S. Burkehead 1857-1858 

L. L. Ilendren 1859-1860 

II. T. Hudson 1861-1S62 

Joel W. Tucker 1863-1861 

William Barringer 1865-1868 

A. W. Mangum 1869 

Jesse A. Cunninggim 1870-1873 

W. II. Bobbitt 1874 

S. D. Adams 1875-1877 


D. K. Bruton & J. C. Thomas, Sup. in 1879 1878-1880 

L. W. Crawford 1880-1884 

J. E. Mann 1884-1888 

L. W. Crawford 1888-1890 

S. H. Hilliard 1890-1894 

J. H. Weaver 1894-1898 

J. C. Rowe :. 1898-1900 

8. B. Tnrreirtine 1900-1904 

G. H. Detwiler 1904-1908 

E. K. McLarty 1908-1912 

C. W. Byrd 1912-1916 

E. L. Bain 1916-1920 

J. H. Earnhardt 1920-1924 

J. F. Kirk 1924-1926 

L. 1). Thompson 1926-1929 

H. Grady Hardin 1929 

The following have served as Presiding' Elders : 

Moses Brock 1838-1840 

S. S. Bryant 1841-1813 

James Goodman 1814-1845 

Sidney Bump ass 1846-1848 

William Carter 1849 

James Jamieson 1850 

William Barringer : 1851-1854 

N. H. D. Wilson 1855-1858 

Numa F. Reid 1859-1862 

Peter Doub 1863-1864 

R. S. Moran 1865 

Numa F. Reid 1866-1869 

W. H. Bobbitt 1870-1871 

Numa F. Reid 1872 

N. H. D. Wilson 1873-1875 

M. L. Wood 1876-1878 

W. H. Bobbitt 1879-1882 

R. O. Burton 1883 

Jesse A. Cunninggim 1881-1887 

S. D. Adams 1888-1889 


J. R, Brooks 1890-1893 

James H. Weaver 1893-1894 

P. J. Carraway 1894-1898 

F. H. Wood 1898-1900 

J. R, Scroggs 1900-1904 

S. B. Turrentine 1904-1908 

W. R. Ware 1908-1912 

G. T. Rove 1912-1914 

J. H. Weaver 1914-1916 

J. H. Earnhardt 1916-1920 

A. W. Plyler 1920-1921 

W. F. Womble 1921-1925 

J. B. Craven 1925-1929 

W. A. Newell 1929 

That the growth of the membership of the church was in 
keeping with the growth of the town is attested by the fact 
that it was necessary in a little over twenty years to erect a 
larger and better church building on Main, now West Market 
Street. In 1849 a lot, which was situated on the North side 
of Main, now West Market Street, between the residence of 
C. H. McKnight and the Masonic Temple, which was then the 
Porter lot, was purchased from Greensboro Female College at 
the price of $400.00, and in 1851 a church building was erected 
thereon. This second building was so constructed and the 
first floor so elevated that the basement could be used for 
meetings and for the smaller Sunday School children, as well 
as for the heating plant. The church was piped for gas 
lighting and was so lighted until after the war, when the 
town gas plant ceased to function. The main auditorium 
was a comfortable room with galleries on the front end and 
each side. This building continued to supply the wants of the 
congregation until the first pastorate of Rev. L. W. Crawford, 
when the building was remodeled and an addition was made to 
the northern end, which took care of the pulpit and altar as 
well as the organ and the choir. 

Some writer has said that the cause for building on West 
Market Street was that the church might be near the College. 
While this statement may be true to a certain extent, yet there 


were more potent reasons: 1. Main, now West Market Street, 
was the business street of the town. 2. The College trustees 
having sold a number of lots of the original purchase to 
Methodists, and they having built upon the same, it made 
quite a colony of Methodists in this end of the town and this 
must have been one of the moving causes. To illustrate: Rev. 
Peter Doub lived on Mendenhall Street, just South of the 
College campus, Rev. S. I). Bumpass lived on the West side 

Centenary Church 

of Mendenhall Street where his granddaughters, the Troys, 
now live. Rev. X. H. D. Wilson lived at the corner of West 
Market and Mendenhall Streets, Rev. William Barringer lived 
where the Balsleys now live on North Mendenhall Street. This 
section was denominated "Piety Hill." Peter Adams, the son 
of William Adams, both of whom were instrumental in 
financing the building of the first church and who were pros- 
perous manufacturers of high hats, known as "stove pipe" 


or "beaver hats,"' lived on West Market Street in a home 
which has since been remodeled and is the present Justice 
home. Peter Adams' son-in-law lived in the building just 
East of the Adams home, now owned by Mrs. 8. L. Alderman. 
The members at this time numbered 192. 

The following excerpt from the minutes of the Greensboro 
Quarterly Conference of December 2, 1837, is a striking lesson 
in laconics to the present day Presiding Elder : 

"On motion, Thomas Pice was appointed secretary. 
Question 1. Are there any complaints f 
Answer. None. 
Question 2. Are there any appeals? 

Answer. None. T>T>r\nrr r> -v n,, 

M. BROCK, Presiding Elder, 

THOMAS RICE, Secretary." 

It may be that some one reading this may possibly think 
that from the shortness of the minutes the members of the 
Conference were indifferent to the actions of its members. 
Not so. An infraction of the church rules or an act of impiety, 
or neglect of duty were promptly attended to and the member 
was publicly corrected. Note the following : 

"Record of trial in 1835, Greensboro: was 

charged with having gone to the circus. He appeared before 
the society, was found guilty, and, having manifested no 
disposition to amend, was expelled from the church." 

" was charged with having gone to the circus. 

He appeared before the society, confessed his crime and prom- 
ised amendment. He was put back on trial for six months." 

(It does seem that our forefathers were weak on the 
circus. ) 

There was a trial of a member for habitual neglect of duty, 
and as he did not appear before the committee, the record 
says: "He was therefore expelled and read out before the 

The expulsion of a person was not recorded "resigned" or 
"withdrawn," but the fact that he or she was expelled was 
plainly stated, and very often the crime with which they had 
been charged was put down. 


These notations are placed after the names of different 
individuals: "Backslidden;" another: "Fallen;" another: 
"Beware;" another: "Danced and went to the Episcopal 
Church;" and another: "Try and save him." These notations 
are after some others : ' ' Died triumphantly ; ' ' another : ' ' Lived 
well and died." 

These men seemed anstere fellows and Ave are disposed to 
laugh at them and their ways, but had we been in their places 
with our liberal ideas and ways, would we have been able to 
accomplish what they did? 

There are records which show that the church in Greens- 
boro for years made use of the old Methodist custom of allow- 
ing a certain amount for the minister, a like allowance for his 
wife and a stated sum for traveling and table expenses. Thus 
for example, the following record for 1854 is found, which is 
a statement for the "allowance" made for the pastor's family 
and for quarterage and traveling expenses for the Presiding 
Elder : 

To traveling expenses .. $ 40.00 

Quarterage for self 100.00 

Quarterage for wife 100.00 

Table expenses 260.48 

Hire for his girl, Ann 50.00 

Hire for his girl, Malinda 16.66 

Rent for house 78.00 

Total $645.14 

The following is the Presiding Elder's account: 

Quarterage $ 60.00 

Traveling expenses '2.00 

The early circuit rider had no pipe organ nor surpliced 
choir with trained voices to make delightful harmony. In 
announcing the hymn, as there were no hymn books save the 
one he had, he would read the first two lines of a stanza, then 
pitch or hoist the tune and sing the two lines, the congregation 
joining in. Then the last two lines of the stanza were read 
and sung by the preacher and the congregation joining in. 
This was repeated until the whole hymn was sung. Sometimes 


the pitch or hoist of the tune would be disastrous, so the old 
circuit rider would stick to the old familiar tunes and hymns 
— such as : 

"Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, 
That saved a wretch like me,'' 
or — 
"Alas, and did my Saviour bleed 
And did my Sovereign die." 
or — 
"Come, humble sinner, in whose heart 
A thousand thoughts revolve. 

The list of pastors and presiding elders who have served 
this church embrace some of the best known pulpit orators 
and best beloved North Carolina preachers. Some of them 
were appointed to this charge, filled the appointment with 
fidelity and ability and passed on to other fields, while others 
made their homes here and became more identified as a part 
of this church than the others. 

Of the latter class was Rev. X. H. I). Wilson, a native of 
this county, who continued to reside here, although he served 
many other charges in the State as pastor and Presiding 
Elder. He was many times a member of the General Confer- 
ence and was voted for a Bishop of his church, and lacked 
only a few votes of being elected. He was a man of splendid 
endowment and of eminent ability, devoted to the service of 
his Master and well fitted for the high office of Bishop. His 
son. Rev. X. H. 1). Wilson, is an honored member of the North 
Carolina Conference, where for a number of years he has fol- 
lowed in the footsteps of his distinguished father, preaching 
the gospel. 

Mrs. Mary J. Wilson, the wife of Rev. X. II. D. Wilson, 
Sr., like her husband, was an outstanding member of this 
church, and upon the organization of the North Carolina 
Woman's Foreign Missionary Society she became one of the 
leaders of that organization. Both were an inspiration and 
blessing to this church. 

Rev. Numa F. Reid, son of Rev. James Reid, who was on 


Guilford circuit in 1821, and father of Rev. F. L. Reid, served 
this church several times as Presiding Elder and pastor. He 
was recognized as one of the State's greatest pulpit orators, 
and although his death occurred at an early age in his career, 
he left a great impression upon the people. His sermons and 
addresses were published in book form by his sons, James W. 
and F. L. Reid. 

Rev. Jesse A. Cunninggim and his wife, Mrs. Lucy A. 
Cunninggim, had much to do with the spiritual and material 
progress of this church. Though, after serving here as pastor 
and Presiding Elder he went to other work, he and his wife 
considered this their home. Their work still abides here. 

An important incident in the history of this church was 
the coming to it of Rev. S. D. Bumpass and his wife, Frances 
Webb Bumpass. He was the Presiding Elder in 1846-1848, 
and was appointed as supernumerary in 1851 with James 
Jamieson as pastor of the church. In addition to his work as 
minister, he commenced the publication of a religious news- 
paper called "The AVeekly Message." While attending the 
Annual Conference in Salisbury in 1851, he was called from 
his labor here to his reward. In "The Founders and Build- 
ers of Greensboro," Mrs. Lucy H. Robertson beautifully writes 
of Frances Webb Bumpass : 

"Crushed as was the beart of the wife 'neath the 

heavy blow, the child of God turned to her Heavenly 

Father as her refuge in the time of trouble, and 

relying on His sustaining grace, she returned to her 

home now darkened by the shadow of her great 

sorrow, taking up bravely the duties required at her 

hands in the care and training of her children, all of 

whom under her tender care and ministration of love 

grew to noble Christian manhood and womanhood 

and 'rose up to call her blessed.' " 

' ' Among the tasks which seemed providentially placed in 

her hands and which she regarded as a sacred trust was the 

continuance of the publication of a religious newspaper which 

Mr. Bumpass had begun to publish a short time before bis 

death under the title of 'The Weekly Message.' With some 


trepidation at entering upon a kind of work so unusual for 
woman in those days, she nevertheless complied with the 
known wish of her husband and took up the torch that had 
passed from his hand, trusting' thereby to bring more of light 
and heart-warmth into a world that has never too much of 
either. In this spirit prompted by a desire for service and 
usefulness, she undertook this 'labor of love,' continuing 
it for twenty years, receiving from many sources assurance of 
the good she was doing with her pen. Mrs. Bumpass discon- 
tinued in 1872 'The AVeekly Message,' which she had issued 
through so many years from her home, the printing and all 
mechanical details having been carried on under her super- 
vision by young women trained and directed by her. This 
was no light task, but well and faithfully performed by this 
devoted woman, who never failed to answer the call of duty or 
an opportunity to do good. The last years of her consecrated 
life were, if possible, enriched still further by an enlarged 
sphere of activity opened up to her through the Woman's 
Foreign Missionary Society, which was inaugurated by the 
General Conference of the Southern Methodist church in May, 
1878. Mrs. Bumpass was the first corresponding secretary of 
the North Carolina Woman's Foreign Missionary Society and 
through this office she became a member of the Woman's 
Board of Missions. She filled this position most faithfully 
and acceptably until 1890, when on account of the division of 
the Conference she was elected to the same office in the 
Woman's Foreign Missionary Society of the Western North 
Carolina Conference. This relation to the woman's work of 
her beloved church she held with earnestness and zealous 
devotion until she 'fell on sleep' May 8, 1898.'' 

Although Rev. Peter Doub and Dr. C. F. Deems, of this 
church, were life members in 1856 of the Missionary Society 
organized by the General Conference, there was little done by 
individual churches until 1879. However, in 1870, the first 
Children's Society of this Church was organized by Mrs. F. 
W. Bumpass under the name of the "Busy Bees," later 
changed to the "Willing Workers" and in 1887 uniting with 
the "Bright Jewels," by the North Carolina Conference. 


The beginning of the Woman 's Foreign Missionary Society 
was an epoch making event in the history of this Church. 

During the pastorate of the Rev. D. R. Bruton, he called 
a meeting of the women of the Church to be held at the par- 
sonage on the 23rd day of February, 1879, for the purpose 
of organizing a Woman's Foreign Missionary Society, to be 
an auxiliary of the North Carolina Conference Society. Such 
organization had been authorized by the General Conference 
in May, 1878. To their pastor's call the women of the church 
responded in a manner in keeping with the honorable history 
made by this Society. There were 57 Charter members, whose 
names appear on record, with the following officers appointed, 
pro tern. : 

Miss Amanda V. Lee President 

Mrs. J. M. Winstead First Vice-President 

Mrs. Rebecca Tyler Second Vice-President 

Mrs. Mary E. Owen Third Vice-President 

Mrs. W. B. Farrar Fourth Vice-President 

Mrs. J. A. Odell Fifth Vice-President 

Mrs. B. E. Sergeant Sixth Vice-President 

Mrs. W. H. Hill Seventh Vice-President 

Mrs. A A. Anderson Eighth Vice-President, 

Miss Eugenia H. Bumpass Recording Secretary 

Mrs. D. R. Bruton Corresponding Secretarj- 

Mrs. L. W. Andrews Treasurer 

Members Enrolled 

Miss DeLavolette Alderman Mrs. Matt Hughes 

Mrs. A. A. Anderson Mrs. Alex Jones 

Mrs. Wm. H. Bobbitt Mrs. Lizzie Lentz 

Mrs. M. E. Bryant Miss Mary E. Owen 

Miss Ella Bruton Mrs. C. M. Parks 

Mrs. S. W. Dilworth Miss Maude Alford 

Mrs. T. H. Edwards Mrs. L. W. Andrews 

Mrs. W. B. Farrar Mrs. A. Brockman 

Miss Ada Glascock Mrs. F. W. Bumpass 

Mrs. Wm. H. Hill Miss E. H. Bumpass 

Mrs. George H. Gregory Mrs. Silas Dodson 


Mrs. Wm. K. Eldridge 


Oliver Farmer 

Miss Annie Forbis 


Sue Gregory 

Miss Kate H. Gregory 


Maggie Houston 

Mrs. Levi Houston 


T. Ham 

Mrs. Robert Glenn 


T. Jacobs 

Mrs. L. B. Julian 


Amanda V. Lee 

Mrs. George Kistler 


C. W. Ogbnrn 

Mrs. J. A. Odell 


Robert E. Potts 

Mrs. James Pearce 


Lou Ross 

Mrs. Lucy H. Robertson 


B. E. Sergeant 

Mrs. George Alley 


A. M. Sherwood 

Miss Maude Brent 


Preston B. Troy 

Mrs. D. R. Brnton 


Clara Sergeant 

Miss Sallie Brent 


Bettie Staples 

Mrs. S. E. Causey 


Rebecca Tyler 

Miss Bessie R. Easier 


Mary B. Steele 

Mrs. Wm. Edwards 


George Terrell 

Mrs. N. 

II. D. Wilson 

Of these 57 members the following are living : 
Mrs. C. II. Ireland Miss Sue Gregory 

Mrs. Maude Alford Carpenter Mrs. Margaret Ellerson 

Mrs. Kate Glenn Mrs. W. R. Odell 

Mrs. G. W. Whitsett 

Mrs. F. W. Bumpass was appointed a delegate to the meet- 
ing of the executive association of the AVoman's Foreign Mis- 
sionary Society in Louisville, Ky., May 16, 1879, and the 
Society paid her expenses which amounted to $10.85. 

The first public meeting of the auxiliary was held the 
fourth Sunday in September, 1879, and at that time Mr. James 
W. Reid of AYentworth delivered the address. 

On November 6, 1879, Airs. Fannie Ogburn Andrews con- 
tributed the sum of $50.00 as a memorial to a friend, Mrs. 
Ellen Morphis AVood, who was a student and teacher at 
Greensboro Female College, and who sailed in 1859 as a 
missionary to China. This amount was supplemented by 
$40.00 paid by the Society to be used in educating a Chinese 
girl who was to bear the name of Ellen Morphis AVood. A 


few weeks later the Society, inspired by this generosity, 
assumed the responsibility of the education of a Chinese girl 
to be named Frances W. Bumpass, in honor of one of the 
oldest and best-loved members of the auxiliary. The necessary 
amount, $90.00, was subscribed. In 1887 Mrs. Bumpass was 
made the first life member of the society by payment of $20.00 
from the Society treasury. 

College Place Church 

Mrs. F. W. Bumpass, Mrs. L. W. Crawford, Mrs. Lucy H. 
Robertson, Mrs. X. II. I). Wilson, Mrs. J. A. Cunninggim, 
members of the auxiliary, were members of the Woman's 
Foreign Board, while Mrs. F. H. E. Ross, another member, 
held the position of treasurer of the W. M. Council for more 
than a decade. 

Perhaps there is not another Society in the Conference that 
has furnished more Conference officers than has the West 
Market Street Auxiliary. In looking over the records we find 


that Mrs. F. W. Bumpass, Mrs. N. II. I). Wilson, Mrs. Lucy 
H. Robertson, Mrs. J. A. Cunninggim, Mrs. F. H. E. Ross, 
were among the earlier officers before the organization of the 
Western North Carolina Conference, Woman's Foreign Mis- 
sionary Society, and serving in the capacity of Conference 
officers and District Secretaries since 1890 are Mrs. Lucy II. 
Robertson, for thirty-six years President of the Conference; 
Mrs. F. AY. Bumpass, Corresponding Secretary for eight years; 
Mrs. L. AY. Crawford, Airs. Bumpass' successor, for fourteen 
years as Corresponding Secretary; Miss Eugenia Bumpass, 
Treasurer for one year; Airs. F. H. E. Ross, Superintendent of 
Publication (one year) ; Airs. R. R. Alley, Second A ice-Presi- 
dent (two years); Airs. L. H. Martin, Second Vice-Presi- 
dent (two years') ; Airs. G. AY. Whitsett, Recording Secretary 
(six years) ; Airs. S. H. Isler, Superintendent of Literature 
and Publicity (since 1923) and possibly others. During the 
thirty-seven years District Secretaries have been chosen from 
this church as follows : 

Airs. J. H. Weaver, Airs. R. P. Troy, Airs. R. R. Alley, 
Airs. Blanche Carr Sterne, Aliss Pearl AYyehe. Airs. A. E. 
Fordham, Airs. B. X. Mann, Airs. S. Y. Dawson, Airs. A. L. 

For years Aliss Helen Richardson was the adopted mission- 
ary of the Society to China. Since her death the Helen 
Richardson Fund has gone to the support of other missionaries 
in the foreign field. In 1885 two scholarships were taken out 
in the Laura Haygood School. At the present time the 
record shows that the Society is responsible for the support 
of Aliss Ola Callahan, missionary to Mexico ; Nancy Hood Bible 
woman in Korea supported by Airs. C. H. Ireland ; Frances 
Bumpass Bible woman in Korea supported by Airs. S. H. 
Isler in memory of her mother. Airs. Eugenia C. AYatlington; 
Bible woman in Japan supported by Airs. A. AY. Plyler, besides 
a scholarship each at Scarritt College and Brevard Institute. 

The Woman's Home Missionary Society was organized by 
Airs. F. II. E. Ross and held its first meeting May 19, 1903. 
There were 49 Charter members. Airs. Ross was the moving 


spirit of this organization in the beginning of the Home Mis- 
sion work. 

The union of the two Societies was consummate;! in accord- 
ance with the action of the General Conference in the year 
1910 and the Woman's Missionary Society, as we now know it. 
was begun. Tt might lie of interest to note that the total 
amount raised last year for all purposes by the Society was 

The Margaret Foster Missionary Society was organized in 
1888 under the name of The Ladies' Missionary Societj/ of 
West Market Street Church, through the aid and influence of 
Mrs. F. W. Bumpass and Mrs. Lucy A. Cunninggim, with the 
following charter members: 

Miss Rose Andrews Miss Addie Andrews 

Miss Rhusie Wilson Miss Mary Gregory 

Miss Ella Sergeant Miss Maie Small 

Miss Emma Mann Miss Belle Carter 

Miss Allie Blosser Miss May Alderman 

Miss Myra Alderman Miss Fattie C. Ball 

Miss Alice Jones Miss Hennie Ireland 

Miss Manna Alderman Miss Belle Ilutton 
Miss Mary Trotter 

The stated purpose of this organization was to get the 
young life of the church to aid the women and children in 
sending the gospel to those in foreign lands, to those on our 
borders and among the Indians in this country. 

Xo special work Mas attempted until Mrs. J. II. Weaver, 
in 1898, came before the society with some definite work, to 
wit: The paying of $40.00 per year for six years for tin 1 
purpose of educating a girl in one of the church schools in 
Mexico. This proposition was gladly accepted, and Isabel 
Medina completed her education and became a Bible teacher 
among her people. 

At this juncture Mrs. L. W. Crawford asked the society 
to pledge $100.00 toward the support of Miss Margaret Foster, 
who was then in the Woman's Medical College at Philadelphia, 
Fa., preparing for her work in China, which the society 

promptly agreed to do. In 1905 Miss Margaret Foster visited 
the Society and the members were so impressed with her that 
they wanted to assume all the expenses of her training and 
claim her as their representative in foreign fields. 

After her visit here she returned to her home in Mississippi 
and was stricken with fever which proved fatal. Upon her 
death, the society as a beautiful tribute to her memory, 
changed its name to that of Margaret Foster Missionary 
Society and decided to establish a memorial fund with which 
to keep some missionary in her stead in the foreign field. 

For seven successive weeks the members met to pray that 
one of its members might be called to succeed Margaret Foster. 
This prayer was answered in the person of Miss Nina Troy, 
the granddaughter of Mrs. F. W. Bumpass, Mother of Mis- 
sions in the AVest Market Street Church. She sailed for 
Huchow, China, September 14, 1912, and is still at work in 
the foreign field. 

Another of the members of this Society to go to the 
Orient was Miss Annice Siler, who went to the Hiroshima 
Girls School, at Hiroshima, Japan, under the appointment of 
the Board of Missions. Another of its members, Mrs. Blanche 
Carr Sterne, was trained at Scarritt College, with the hope 
of going to Korea. The lack of a physician's certificate pre- 
vented her from carrying out her plans, but she is now filling 
a great need as a welfare worker in Guilford County. Still 
another of its members. Miss Ola Callahan, attended Scarritt 
College and is now serving as a missionary in Mexico, being 
supported by the Woman's Missionary Societv of this church. 

This society has gone on record as expressing its love and 
gratitude to Mrs. F. AY. Bumpass, Airs. Lucy Cunninggim and 
Airs. J. II. Weaver, for their loving guidance in its beginning; 
and to Airs. L. W. Crawford, Airs. Lucy H. Robertson and 
Airs. Reuben Alley for their continued help, sympathy and 
inspiration in later years. The Society continues to prosper 
and to carry on an effective work, the total amount raised last 
year for all purposes being $1,950.54. 

During this present year. Airs. Lucy H. Robertson, one of 
our choicest spirits and one of the outstanding leaders of 


Methodism in North Carolina, passed away. For more than 
fifty years she had given splendid qualities of mind and heart 
as teacher, President of a College, leader in the Missionary 
Movement, and other church activities. She was a woman of 
deep Christian character, and coupled with it such tine 
elements of culture and refinement that she was universally 
loved and respected. Her public addresses at Conferences and 
other gatherings were models of grace and good sense. She 
lived long and well, and her memory is cherished by many who 
knew her and loved her as a noble Christian woman. 

Following this sketch of the history of the woman's work, 
all of which was largely indebted to the coming of Mrs. F. 
W. Bumpass in 1851, we turn back now to pick up the his- 
torical thread. 

The membership of this church from 1851 till 1887 showed 
a gradual increase, but the war came on with its devastations, 
and of course, the work was interfered with. In 1866 there 
appears for the first time that there are no colored members 
of the church. This is to be accounted for by the fact that 
they were freed and desired to attend a church of their own. 

In the early history of Methodism the lay members of the 
church did not appear to a great extent in the work of the 
church, but since 1868, the activities of the lay members have 
increased in a very large measure, and at this time they have 
assumed a very large part of the work. In the Sunday school 
and in the home and foreign missionary work they are covering 
much ground and have extended the Christian religion in 
many fields. 

In this church, within the memory of many members now 
living, there were men who did a noble part in the work of 
the church, among such are : 

Professor W. F. Alderman, W. II. Hill, J. A. Odell, II. X. 
Snow. J. M. Winstead, L. W. Andrews, Dr. II. M. Alford, 
Mebane Lamb, W. E. Coffin, E. Poole, H. B. Tatum, J. H. 
Sparger, G. W. Whitsett, T. M. Pickard, C. W. Alley, G. T. 
Glascock, John Lewis, J. W. Landreth, William Love, James 
W. Albright, J. P. Buchanan, E. J. Stafford and others, who 
have gone to their reward. There are many men and women in 


this church who have clone and are doing great tilings for the 
church in the forward movement for making this world better 
and for the salvation of the people, but their names are not 
given here because they are living. 

During the pastorate of Rev. L. W. Crawford the old 
church was enlarged and a lot purchased in anticipation of 
building a church in South Greensboro. In 1887 a church was 
erected in that section known as Centenary Church, the lot 

Park Place Church 

having been donated by Rev. L. W. Crawford, Rev. Jesse A. 
Cunninggim and William Love. Forty members from this 
church formed that church. The building then erected soon 
became too small for the congregation and the present hand- 
some church Avas erected at the corner of Asheboro and 
Arlington Streets. 

During the pastorate of Rev. S. H. Hilliard, in the spring 
of 1892, it was decided on April 17, at the second Quarterly 


Conference, to build the present church. The lot was. purchased 
from the Caldwell heirs and J. S. Jones at the price of $6,000. 

In the beginning of that building program, Mr. Hilliard 
preached a great sermon on the text, "Except the Lord build 
the house, they labor in vain who build it." The members 
went to the task determined to carry out the spirit of that 
message, seeking the Lord's guidance in every detail. And 
surely the Lord was in it all ! The following building com- 
mittee was appointed : 

J. A. Odell, C. II. Ireland, C. H. Dorsett, (3. F. Pearce, G. 
W. Whitsett, B. H. Merrimon, 8. L. Alderman, Samuel Brown, 
H. W. Cobb, H. M. A] ford, G. W. Alley, W. G. Balsley, II. L. 
Scott, W. H. Hill, J. M. Winstead, C. M. Hackett. The com- 
mittee employed as architect, S. W. Foulk. 

The church was not built by contract, but the committee 
secured J. M. Wolf as superintendent and J. L. AYhmingham 
as building foreman, and the work was done by day labor. 
This supplied employment to a large number of people, and it 
was to them a God-given blessing because it was a time of 
great financial depression and practically no building was 
going on. Ground was broken June 26, and the first brick 
was laid July 5, 1892. The bricks were made by D. N. Kirk- 
patrick. It is worthy of notice that the handsome interior 
wood-work was done by the Cape Fear Manufacturing Com- 
pany under the supervision of Brother John T. Hunt, who 
still lives in our midst, and who has long been one of our 
faithful stewards. The building was completed during the 
pastorate of Rev. J. II. Weaver, at a cost of approximately 
$52,000.00. The beautiful memorial windows are not in- 
cluded in this sum as they were donations. 

It may be of interest to note that the first contribution to 
the building of the present church was made in gold by S. A. 
Kerr, an Elder in the First Presbyterian Church, ayIio married 
a granddaughter of Rev. Peter Doub. 

All the indebtedness on the church was paid, and the 
building was dedicated on Easter Sunday, in 1901, Bishop 
J. C. Granberry preaching the dedicatory sermon. This was 
during the pastorate of Dr. S. B. Turrentine. During this 


same pastorate the pipe organ was bought and installed, and 
the lot north of the church, extending to Gaston Street, was 
purchased. A portion of this lot was later sold for the 
erection of the public library, which building still stands. 
In 1910 during the pastorate of Dr. E. K. McLarty. the Sun- 
day school building adjoining the present church building on 
the north was erected, costing approximately $30,000.00. 

In addition to Centenary Church, which has already been 
mentioned, the following churches were fostered by this church 
and may be called its children: Proximity Church, Spring 
Garden Church (now College Place), Carraway Memorial 
Church, Park Place Church, and Bethel Church. 

Rev. P. J. Carraway, who was Presiding Elder of this 
district and who had served many charges in this state, con- 
tinued in the service of his Master until after he had passed 
his eighty-third year of age, and preached at the church 
which was named "Carraway Memorial Church" in his 
memory, to within ten days of his death. This was as he had 
wished — that he "die in the harness." He died on July 17, 
1907. in the hope of a glorious hereafter. 

To Rev. L. W. Crawford and his wife the Methodists here 
are much indebted for their splendid work. The records show 
that it was during the pastorate of Rev. Mr. Crawford that the 
West Market Street Church was enlarged. In company with 
Rev. Jesse Cunninggim and AVilliam Love he bought and 
donated a lot for the erection of the first Centenary Church. 
It was through his and his wife's interest that Spring Garden 
(now College Place) was organized and the first church build- 
ing was erected. It was through Dr. Crawford's and Rev. 
G. T. Rowe's efforts with the aid of some of the West Market 
members that Proximity Church was organized. Dr. Craw- 
ford is entitled to be called a church builder. 

Rev. J. H. Weaver, who was pastor of this church when it 
was completed, and who had served as Presiding Elder of the 
District, was returned to the District as Presiding Elder in 
1914. During his service here as Presiding Elder, on Wednes- 
day evening the 21st day of February, 1917, he was called to 
be with Him whom he had served for so many years. His call 

was sudden, as he was returning home after having taken part 
in the Wednesday evening prayer service, but he was ready. 
He was truly a servant of the Lord. 

One hundred years ago this Church began its existence 
with sixty-four members. Today it has nineteen hundred and 
twenty-two members. It has a large Sunday School, con- 
ducted by a corps of intelligent and trained officers and 
teachers. As missionaries, it has three representatives in Korea, 
one in Brazil, two in Japan, one in China, and one in 
Mexico. It has aided in the founding of a College and the 
founding of five churches. The building stands on the lot 
adjoining the lot on which Rev. William D. Paisley, the 
founder of the First Presbyterian Church lived, and his 
descendants after him for more than one hundred years. It 
was he who, alternating with Rev. Peter Doub, preached in 
the building on Sycamore Street before the erection of the 
Methodist or the Presbyterian Church buildings. This church 
building is situated most advantageously for service and is 
convenient for those attending Church from the business 
section of the city as well as the public at large. It is admir- 
ably planned and constructed and the acoustics are so perfect 
that it is a pleasure for a speaker to address a congregation and 
a great comfort to the hearers. 

In looking back over the one hundred years through which 
this Church organization has passed, with its wonderful 
growth in this city, and its influence in the state and nation, 
we would return thanks to God for giving us the noble men 
and women who have builded so wisely and well for us, and 
we would take fresh courage and carry on more effectively for 
the redemption of the world, to which task our forefathers 
dedicated their lives. 

' ' Faith of our fathers ! Holy faith ! 
We will be true to thee till death ! ' ' 





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